Here are the top news stories in talent & organization from this week.

New research finds gender balance crucial in bank boards

According to new research by Alison Miles, a lecturer at the University of Plymouth’s Business School, women in top roles in financial services behave in a way that may have made the global banking crisis less likely. Miles presented her findings to a House of Commons Treasury committee and the UK’s Banking Standards Board. The research, conducted over a five-year period, compared the leadership characteristics of male and female top executives of global banks from 1999 to 2017. Miles then compared them with the leadership styles of the executives in the 16 banks that failed or needed a bailout after the crisis. The research shows the leadership styles of top male executives at the failing institutions featured “alpha male” characteristics such as arrogance and hubris. Senior women leaders tended to show characteristics such as commitment to values and an internal moral compass. The research reveals the latter were absent in the failing banks. “In the 11 years since the financial crisis, the world has continued to see global banks embroiled in scandal and losses, despite an increased focus on banking standards and reforms designed to improve market discipline. Evidence is growing to suggest that the leadership styles of senior board members, both male and female, is a crucial element to be considered,” Miles said.

Five ways to evaluate AI systems for HR

With the proliferation of artificial intelligence (AI) systems and tools available to recruiters, it is important to assess how well they work, argues Felix Wetzel in this Recruiting Daily article. He highlights five features that can help recruiters evaluate AI systems: 1. It displays a human-centric functionality that can analyze resumé keywords in semantic context. 2. Built by experts, it features an easy-to-use interface and fits neatly into the recruiter’s workflow. 3. It’s designed to be transparent in order to create trust and eliminate concerns about regulation. 4. It puts the user in control, not the algorithms, and puts a greater emphasis on decisions and activities. 5. It mitigates bias with a diversity of data sources and linear models. “As a next step, I would insist on a trial, so you can use the system and experience the performance and results for yourself within your company’s and industry’s context,” Wetzel writes.

Top challenges facing recruiters today

In this episode of the WorkTrends podcast, TalentCulture’s Meghan M. Biro talks with Jack Coapman, chief strategy officer for gr8 People, about the top challenges that recruiters face in the current HR ecosystem. “It’s the first time we have a market in which recruiters are responsible for looking at five different types of generations—and all of them have different expectations,” Coapman says in the interview, citing external market pressures as the top challenge. He also believes the recruiter is one of the fastest-changing roles with ever-expanding expectations. “All of a sudden, we’re getting into this delineation of the different parts of the recruiting process and whether somebody can really be a true, full-cycle recruiter, able to do everything from sourcing to nurturing and hiring and managing pipelines and onboarding and everything out there,” Coapman tells Biro. Last but not the least, Coapman advocates for a better understanding of all the HR tech tools available in the marketplace. “So many times, we find that organizations may make a very quick decision on the nicest-looking platform, and a year later, when the company has grown and changed, that platform is not able to keep up with those complex requirements,” he says.

How mobile benefits apps help the employee experience

“With rising healthcare costs and increased competition for top employees, staying ahead of the curve is more important than ever,” writes Jennifer Riley in this HRDive blog post. “One significant source of employee dissatisfaction is failure to understand what a benefits package contains.” She believes mobile apps make benefits information easier to access, which allows employers to interact with their employees in a more meaningful way. “As employee benefits apps gain traction, employers are experiencing increased enrollment completions, higher engagement/retention rates and reduced healthcare costs,” she writes. Mobile apps also enable employers to actively demonstrate the value of their benefits throughout the year, not just during annual enrollment. With simplified access to personalized benefit information on their smartphones, employees gain an awareness of how much their employers value their wellbeing, which increases trust and loyalty. “The bottom line is a dramatically enhanced employee experience and tangible ROI,” she writes.

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